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“Awful service, and food ill-prepared - apparently understaffed” 2 of 5 bubbles
Review of Pazzaluna Urban Italian Restaurant

Pazzaluna Urban Italian Restaurant
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Ranked #11 of 876 Restaurants in Saint Paul
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $15 - $40
Cuisines: Italian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children, Bar scene, Business meetings, Special occasions, Romantic, Large groups
Dining options: Drinks, Lunch, Dinner, Late Night, Full Bar, Private Dining, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Television, Valet Parking, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Dining style: Casual Dining
Cross street: 5th St.
Description: Italy's abundant and diverse food styles are represented and sampled throughout the year at Pazzaluna. The many culinary faces of Italy's distinct regions find their way to Pazzaluna's cucina daily. Seasonal influence is always projected, as are the artisan and craft suppliers that provide Pazzaluna with the best raw-ingredients Mother Nature has to offer. Pazzaluna is proud of its reputation of buying direct from area farmers on some of its most prized items. This style of purchasing is the TRUE ITALIAN TRATTORIA way - using local, regionally grown and produced supplies, reflecting the unique influence of the area as all of the ingredients come together in concert to perform in a dinner experience of a lifetime. To Italians, a meal is more than just food-it's an experience, an event to be shared with family and friends. No where is this more true than at Pazzaluna Urban Italian in Saint Paul, one of the Twin Cities' best Italian restaurants.
Oakdale MN
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Awful service, and food ill-prepared - apparently understaffed”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 30, 2013

We at there last night, 3/29. we had 6pm reservations, and a 7:30 show at the ordway - should be enough time. We were a little late (10 min or so). We were seated in the round highback booths directly in front of the entrance. they seem cool, but there is a lot of traffic there, and they are apparently invisible to our server. We got water right away, but waited 15 minutes to be acknowledged by our server. (Intending to order a bottle of wine, but not fully sure we'd have time to drink it...) I was actually walking up to the host stand to summon our server when he cam by. But we had menus, so we had made our own selections and ordered right away. He did ask about our event, and the wine and entrees were served quite promptly after that. Mine was quite good - interesting and flavorful. Not a large portion, but acceptable. HOWEVER, my wife ordered the veal medallions. Two medallions were quite thick - maybe 1 1/4-1 1/2" thick. I don't know if they rushed the cooking since we told them we had an event, but they were basically seared on the outside and raw on the inside - sushi-style. We don't eat very much veal, granted, but if they are intending to prepare it like this, I would think they'd warn you, or at least ASK how you wanted it prepared. We waited ~5 min to get our server's attention (or maybe it was someone else...) and sent them back to cook again. I would expect that sending back your entree would be a red-flag of some sort, and they would pay more attention to check when it came back but no luck. It returned a few min later (on clean plate at least), but not any further cooked, as far as we could tell. So my wife cut them into smaller pieces and we sent them back again. I'm finished with my entree at this point. So her food was finally edible, and she/we ate it. It was fine. Somewhere in here a manager-type came by and apologized, but instead of comping our $35 entree, they offered us a free dessert. Ok well at least they are making some effort to redeem the poor food and service. So we ordered a chocolate cheesecake ($8), and the check. Again, i would think they would be trying a little harder at this point, and we really need to leave. I almost asked for the dessert to-go. i swear it took 5+ minutes to get a dessert from the kitchen. It tasted ok- about the size of a ding-dong - as we wolfed it down to leave. Very dissapointing from a $120 meal, and really MEAGER effort to make it up to us. We've been here before, but won't be back, we've had much better service across the street at kincaids.

  • Visited March 2013
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank KarlMN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MorrisseyHospitality, Guest Relations Manager at Pazzaluna Urban Italian Restaurant, responded to this review, April 1, 2013
Thank you for visiting Pazzaluna and for your feedback regarding your experience. We apologize for failing to serve and provide an experience you were hoping and expecting. Event nights - when there is an Ordway play, concert, opera, etc., a Wild game, or other high volume event - are very busy nights, but it is not an excuse to provide poor service. We will contact you through TripAdvisor.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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493 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Victoria, BC
Level Contributor
144 reviews
62 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
“Wonderful menu and excellent service”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 7, 2013

On a Friday night this restaurant was very busy, even at 8 p.m., but the service was excellent and the menu had lots of good choices. The Italian bread and olive tapinade were a great accompaniment to a starter mixed salad. Seafood linguini and thin crust pizza were delicious.

Visited March 2013
Helpful?
Thank Victoria_BCTravelbug
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MorrisseyHospitality, Guest Relations Manager at Pazzaluna Urban Italian Restaurant, responded to this review, March 11, 2013
Thank you for visiting Pazzaluna and we appreciate your patience as the restaurant does get very busy on many nights! The olive tapinade and Italian bread are delicious and we are so glad you enjoyed them! We look forward to serving you again soon.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Level Contributor
58 reviews
41 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“Birthday celebration”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 6, 2013

Went to celebrate a birthday and Pazzaluna offers a free bottle of wine to match your age. We selected and they were out. As it turns out this is the same bottle selected last November to celebrate my wife's birthday. Apparently they don't update their wine list frequently. The food was very good, but the service slow.

Visited February 2013
Helpful?
Thank BRUCE D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MorrisseyHospitality, Guest Relations Manager at Pazzaluna Urban Italian Restaurant, responded to this review, March 11, 2013
Thank you for visiting Pazzaluna for your birthday and for taking advantage of our birthday wine promotion! We are sorry that the bottle you enjoyed last November was no longer available, but from time to time, guests do order enough of a bottle where we do run out. We appreciate your understanding.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Southlake, Texas
Level Contributor
227 reviews
95 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 273 helpful votes
“A St Paul favorite...”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 2, 2013

We've returned to Pazzaluna many times over the past few years - for special occasions, business meals, happy hour, events (e.g., concerts at the Xcel Energy Center), or simply spur of the moment. It is one of our consistent favorites in the Twin Cities.

Expect very good Italian fare - a step above the ordinary, well priced, with a menu that features a number of consistently good apps and solid (broad, but not excessively so) menu of very good pasta, meat and seafood / fish dishes - uniformly well prepared and presented. Outside the occasional over salting of risotto, always quite good.

Pazzaluna has a uniformly friendly and professional staff. The ambiance is warm, and upscale without being stuffy. One could dress well (suit jacket, etc) or (reasonably) casually (e.g., jeans), and feel right at home. Usual a good bit of energy and noise - in a positive sense. Fun. It is popular, with good reason, and can get busy - particularly if an event in St Paul; but we have never had a bad experience - just expect, understandably, they may get busy.

Suggest, for two, a seat at the counter facing the line in the kitchen. Great for watching the well coordinated ballet, if often under duress, as dishes are pushed out. Line cooks are always great and willing to chat or answer questions (if not slammed).

  • Visited August 2012
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Dave_from_MN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MorrisseyHospitality, Guest Relations Manager at Pazzaluna Urban Italian Restaurant, responded to this review, March 4, 2013
Thank you for visiting Pazzaluna and for your review and great pictures from your visit! We really love to see the pictures online and am sure your followers do as well. The 2010 Neprica wine is a favorite and we are very glad you enjoyed it after being suggested it by your server. The salt-crusted sea bass is a newer item (last winter) and has been getting rave reviews. We hope to serve you again soon!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Level Contributor
47 reviews
34 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“More than pizza”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 28, 2013

I'd only been for pizza and happy hour but in January 2013 we decided to splurge and were seated in a classic open dining room of dark wood and Italian decor. The service and servers were excellent and their wine suggestion, a 2010 Tormaresca Neprica, was delicious. We'd requested a red even though we eventually ordered scallops, lobster, and sea bass. All was delicious but the sea bass had the most dramatic presentation, baked in a salt crust and filleted and served table-side by a server who knew what he was doing (see photos). My friends and I were a bit more dressed than usual because we were on our way to the opera, but most other diners were in dressy casual attire. Would definitely go there again.

  • Visited January 2013
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank CoolLoon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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